Smoking: Bad to the Bone

Tobacco products are no longer available for sale to teenagers under the age of 18. Parts of the Tobacco Control Act signed last year at this time by President Obama went into effect this week:

  • No tobacco sales to minors.
  • No packs smaller than 20 cigarettes that were considered soft marketing to teens.
  • Changes in packaging.
  • No more claims of “low tar” or “light” that made the cancer sticks sound safe.

According to the Center for Disease Control statistics, 20% of today’s high school students smoke.

Yes, we know the brain of teens is not fully developed in the judgment area, but still where is their common sense? The “coolness” factor still reigns.

Smoking increases bone turnover and leads to bone loss. Teen years are critical to building as strong of bone as possible. Smoking will prevent that–not to mention all the other deleterious health effects.

Encourage young people to stop smoking before it becomes a lifelong habit. Underage teens will need to have someone else buy their cigarettes, please don’t succumb to pressure to help them to continue this unhealthy practice.

-Diane L. Schneider, MD
Source: CDC, Tobacco Control Act
Image: courtesy of Bill Longshaw /